YEAR BY YEAR, 1900 - 1925

                    
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YEAR BY YEAR
1900 - 1925


HAMILTON BAPTIST CHURCH, 1873--1946

FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, HAMILTON, 1947-199

 

See also:  First Baptist Church, Hamilton, TX
Includes pictures




1900

By 1900 there were 13 Sunday Schools in HCBA with an average attendance of 438. Hamilton Baptist Church contributed $4.75 for missions (Associational Missions) during the year. The church also had a Sunday School and Prayer Meeting.

1901

Services were held in Hamilton Baptist Church on the second Sunday of each month. The church pledged to contribute $10 to State Missions and $10 to Buckners Orphans Home during the ensuing year.

A long debate ensued at this annual association meeting concerning where churches should send contributions for home missions. Proponents of sending such contributions to the Home Board were defeated by those who felt that each church should be free to determine the recipient of their contributions.

"Your committee beg leave to make the following report: we believe that the Baptist denomination of Texas is under a debt of obligation to the Home Board of S. B. C. That it can never repay.

"When the whole state was a wilderness and rapidly being settled by all classes of people, the Home Board sent what has been classed as a "boat load of preachers" and supported them under its fostering care until the principles of Baptists and of missions was deeply imbedded in the hearts of the entire denomination.

"The work of these consecrated men of God has continued to deepen and widen, until Texas is now numbered as one of the leading Baptist states of the Union. To show our appreciation of the noble work done through the Board by its annual contributions to the cause of missions in Texas, we recommend that at least one monthís contributions of all our churches be given to the H. B. And we would further recommend that each church be left free to send her contributions through whatever channel she thinks best and that such freedom be not construed as opposing the organized work.

Respectfully submitted

Dave W. White

The following report from the Committee on State Missions well portrays the development of Baptist work in Texas.

"The destitution which is sought to be relieved by State missions through the medium of the Baptist General Convention of Texas is as wide as the State. Principally however, it extends 700 miles along our Gulf Coast, a thousand miles up the Rio Grande, and 2,000 miles around the Panhandle and also over many counties of the interior of the State, embracing both country and towns and cities, where are to be found, according to the best information, very many thousands of English speaking people, approximately 200,000 Germans, 175,000 Mexicans and 200,000 other foreign born people, who know not the Gospel, as well as numerous small and feeble Baptist churches that are unable to procure regular preaching of the Gospel except they are assisted.

"The first efforts to evangelize the places of that destitution were so inadequate to meet the want that they seemed but as drops to the Ocean or as grains of sand to the Desert.

"Those efforts originated for the most part outside of the State of Texas and were characterized then as Home Mission work. That was long ago. Among the heroic pastors of Texas to whose support Home Mission funds from the older States were sent about that time we are told were Huckins, Tyron, Burleson, Taliaferro, and others, the salaries of all of whom were supplemented, as we are informed, by the Home Mission funds.

"But as Baptists multiplied in Texas and a few Churches became self-sustaining, they began in a very small way to contribute for aid to the more destitute neighboring places, and thus inaugurated State Missions, now become a majestic power. It was many years however before their efforts assumed large proportions and became systematic.

"It goes without saying that twenty years ago the collections of funds for state missions by the Baptists of Texas all told did not amount to $4,000 a year, a tenth of the amount contributed the last current year for that work through the Baptist General Convention. Of the small amount then collected full fifty per cent was consumed in the expense of collection. But, in the 20 years since, Texas Baptist contributions for State Missions have grown from about three thousand dollars to over forty thousand per annum. During the same time the annual contributions of Baptists in Texas for both Home and Foreign Missions have grown from merely nominal sums to many thousands of dollars and simultaneously grand strides have been made in the march of their educational enterprises which themselves, standing as they do for the training of preachers of the gospel and our children in science and literature under the influence of Biblical knowledge, are so many missionary agencies fighting the battles of Divine Revelation against the onslaughts of infidelity and agnosticism.

"Formerly Texas Baptist Missionary effort had for its mediums for the collection of supporting funds, two general bodies, the General Association and the State Convention, and two separate agencies for Home and Foreign Missions and an agency for each separate Educational institution and another for old ministersí relief, and these having little or no co-operation were often found in clashing rivalry. But within a few years past all of these missionary efforts and other kindred enterprises have been consolidated under one general agency for raising funds, their purposes being so germaine to the one great purpose of evangelizing the world as to admit of and even demand perfect co-operation. So that eleven separate costly regimes of official management have been reduced into one great economic system, known as the Baptist General Convention of Texas. This convention sets for the collection of funds through a board of 37 directors for State, Home, and Foreign Missions, Old Ministersí relief, and closely kindred work and for the relief of our University and Collegiate institute through a Committee or Commission of thirteen persons, all appointed by the Convention. Of the thirty-seven directors for State, Home, and foreign Missions, Old M. Relief, etc., only one, who gives all his time to the work, receives any salary, the Corresponding Secretary, who is paid $2,000 per annum, his position requiring great labor and talent. The other directors pay all their own expenses and give their time without pay, in attending to the meetings of the Board.

"The fruits of this Consolidation have been more economic management and greater efficiency all around the circle, and great progress in general benevolence among us. Out of it grew directly the vast effort, undertaken three years ago at San Antonio by the General Convention and already about completed, of raising about $240,000 to free from debt, furnish, and equip, and firmly establish and harmonize the work of Denominational colleges of Texas Baptists, and out of it has grown also a complete and harmonious co-operation between our efforts usually termed Missionary and the Sunday School Board and our other state work essentially missionary to its character, such as the colportage of religious books and Bibles. This last mentioned work has been made co-extensive with the State Mission work of the General Convention and is meeting a want never before supplied in Texas and promises immense results for good. Out of the consolidation too has grown a systematic and efficient effort to build houses of worship for weak churches, and a harmonious co-operation with the great benevolence of Bucknerís Orphan home of which the President of the General Convention is the founder.

"Some of the results of this great consolidated State Missionary enterprise, which has taken in its arms both Home and Foreign Missions and those other kindred works, and to which our Hamilton association annually contributes, have been summarized for last year thus to wit: Missionaries employed 164; Stations supplied regularly and irregularly, 583; Sermons and addresses 24,280; Baptisms for mission churches 2,049; churches assisted in organizing 71; assisted in organizing 200 prayer meetings and 197 Sunday schools, in ordaining 35 Bishops and 107 deacons, distributed 406,501 pages of religious literature, secured 41 church lots, built or repaired 21 meeting houses at a cost of $15,000; distributed 2,885 books, Bibles, etc at a cost of $1,113.55; funds raised for Home, Foreign and State missions, church buildings, ministers relief etc, $66,877, the total expense of raising which is reported officially at only $3,766.23, this being 5.6% of the amount raised; funds raised in three years to furnish and equip Baylor University and free from debt Baylor Female College, Howard Payne College, Decatur College, East Texas Baptist Institute, and Burleson College [editorís note: in Greenville], $240,000, approximately.

"It is well worth our attentive consideration that it cost the General Convention as the agent of State, Home, and Foreign Missions only about one third as much to collect the $66,000 mentioned, as it cost these three departments of mission work to collect about one tenth that sum, when years ago they worked through three separate sets of salaried agents, and frequently clashed in their efforts for want of co-operation. The results we have noticed as emanating directly from the great system of the General Convention seems to be indubitable signs that God is in the work. Each successive year the General Convention has grown in membership and power Ďtill it is recognized as the greatest religious convention of the World. By the fruits we may judge it..... .... ...

Respectfully submitted,

G. R. Freeman, Committee

1902

There were 26 churches in HCBA in 1902 with a membership of 1,437 members. Twelve of the 26 churches had Sunday Schools. R. O. Hood was employed as the Associational Missionary at a salary of $40 per month.

1903

Hal F. Buckner noted in his report of Ministerial Consecration and Support that nearly all of the pastors in HCBA had to make a large part of their income through farm work. Further he stated, "...that if we, as churches, would do a better part by our preachers, we would have better preaching and if the preachers would do more teaching the people would give them a better support." The Baptists of Texas supported each old retired ministers and wives, as well as widows of retired ministers with $23 per annum. During the 1903 church year, Hamilton Baptist Church budget was $362.20.

1904

In the 1904 church year, Hamilton Baptist Church paid the pastor $56; gave $7.75 to Home missions; $12 to Association missions; $7.75 to Foreign Missions; and $5.25 to Bucknerís Orphans Home.

1905

Following the first session of the Annual Associational meeting on Wednesday morning in the Cow House Baptist Church at Pottsville, the Association adjourned to an abundant dinner on the ground served to both man and beast. The Wednesday evening service was held at "early candle light," and the following hymns were sung: "Amazing Grace," "When the Saints Go Marching In," "Washed and Redeemed," and "When I can Read My Title Clear."

In 1905 Hamilton Baptist Church gave to Old Ministers Relief, $50; and Baptist Schools, $57; with the total church budgetís being $1,065.65.

1906

The work of the Baptist General Convention of Texas had been impacted by the organization of the B. M. A. in 1901 which had attracted 325 churches which had supported the BGCT. Eld. A. E. Baten presented the work of the BGCT followed by J. F. McClung who reported on the BMA. Following the debate collections were taken resulting in $10.40 for BGCT and $17 for BMA.

1907

Total disbursements for the church year of was $248.62 (There was no designation for a pastorís salary.) The annual association meeting was held at Shiloh Baptist Church in Adamsville which provided an abundance of food for both man and beast.

1908

Cooperation with the BGCT had increased significantly from 1898 through 1908. Beginning in 1908 there were reports to the association about "Womanís Work" (later to be come WMU). Hamilton Baptist Church gave $84.75 for Ministerial help and had a total budget of $799.35.

The first train to Hamilton, the Stephenville North and South Texas Railway, which connected Hamilton with Stephenville via Spurlin and Carlton, arrived in Hamilton on December 25, 1907. This ensured that Hamilton had a reliable contact with the remainder of the world. An avenue which was not dependent upon the weather and muddy roads.

1909

Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary was located in Waco headed by Dr. B. H. Carroll, dean. BGCT had 8 schools (colleges) with about 3,000 enrolled. James C. Newman remained the associational missionary. There were also 66 state missionaries, 231 foreign missionaries, and 1,066 home mission workers. In HCBA there were 983 people enrolled in Sunday School with an average attendance of 616. Buckners Orphans Home provided care for 600 children. For the first time the minutes of HCBA provided a place to report the value of the parsonage and the parsonage of Hamilton Baptist Church was valued at $1,800.

1910

Before the Cooperative Program was developed, each Baptist institution presented reports followed by collections/offerings/pledges to support their work. It well behooved each institution to strive to make a presentation early in the session before the money in purses and pocketbooks dried up. Early reports at this annual meeting were presented by Miss Breedlove of the Girls Industrial Home of Simmons College, and Miss Lucy Adams for the Cottage Home Department of Baylor Female College in Belton.

Special objectives of B.W. M. W. (Baptist Womanís Missionary Workers) included the Willeford-Miller Training School in China, The Training School, Louisville, KY, The Margaret Home for children of Home and Foreign Missionaries, and the training school to be set up in connection with Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, which had been relocated to Fort Worth.

Total budget of Hamilton Baptist Church was $1,470.5.

1911

By 1911 the worship services (i.e. singing, praying and preaching) were called "Divine Service." There were 18 Sunday Schools in the association with 1,080 enrolled with an average attendance of 651. W. T. Conner preached at one service of the annual meeting. The first report of B.Y.P.U. (Baptist Young Peopleís Union) was presented by A. M. Smith

On February 14, 1911, the first train on the Cotton Belt Railroad from Gatesville arrived in Hamilton. The Cotton Belt rail line extended to Comanche on September 3, 1911.

1912

Three hundred and sixty-nine missionaries served in the four divisions of State Missions-- Evangelism, Assisting Weak Churches, Assisting Associations, and Colportage. Recipients of Old Ministers Relief received about $30 per quarter.

1913

Sumptuous meals were served under Ageeís tabernacle at the annual association meeting. Messengers were assigned homes in which to stay at night during the annual meeting.

Wade D. Vinson, Associational missionary identified in his report some of the needs of Hamilton County Baptists. Included in the needs were: knowledge, church buildings and better church buildings; a consecrated ministry; a financial system; Sunday Schools and better Sunday Schools; more B. Y. P. U.íS; Womenís Work; prayer meetings; preachers conference; a gospel tent; the circulation and reading of Baptist papers, and Colportage work. Two of the things which hindered Baptist work in 1913 were indifference and severely cold winter weather.

Home Mission work included 30 mountain schools in the Carolinas, Virginia, Kentucky, Georgia, and Tennessee with 5,118 students; evangelism; establishing a church building loan fund; work in Cuba and the Canal Zone; work with Indians, Negroes, and foreigners. Retired ministers received only $10 per month through Old Ministersí Relief.

The first BGCT sanitarium (hospital) was almost a year old. Texas Baptist Memorial Sanitarium (now Baylor Hospital) opened in Dallas to be "a modern, scientific institution where the sick may get the benefit of the highest medical and hospital advantages" instead of a boarding house for sick people. The sanitarium was within a block of Baylor Medical College and a school for nurses.

1914

Some of the hymns used during the annual association meeting were "Higher Ground," "We Shall See the King," "God Is Able to Deliver Thee," "All the Way My Savior Leads Me," "Channels of Blessings," "Where He Leads Me," "On Jordanís Stormy Banks," "Will There Be Any Stars," and "What a Friend We Have in Jesus." Foreign Mission work focused on four divisions: Evangelism, native Day School work, Preacher training, and Medical missions. An appeal from China was presented--for knowledge of the "Jesus Man," who would deliver them from their evil practices.

Wade D. Vinson, associational missionary, reported that he had raised funds ($47.95) via letters to Sunday Schools and Ladies Aid Societies to pay for a gospel tent, which he presented to HCBA. Colportage work (pre-Baptist Book Store on wheels) had been profitable under Bro. Wadeís leadership and colportage funds had been loaned to HCBA. Bro. Vinson resigned as associational missionary with $195 due in back salary. (He had been paid $432.50 for the year.) The Thursday evening service of the annual meeting was canceled by heavy rains and storms.

1915

C. Ross Payne was appointed county missionary for the summer for which he and his wife were paid $87.80 and with $62.20 unpaid salary. SBC Foreign missions served people in China, Japan, Italy, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, and Africa baptizing 5,252 people during the previous year. The Judson Centennial goal for the state of Texas was $250,000 to provide urgent equipment for foreign fields. Retired ministers still received $10 per month. Inclement weather delayed the beginning of the Friday morning session of the annual meeting until 10:10 A.M.

1916

J. B. Perry was employed as county missionary for the summer of 1916. As a fore-runner of the Cooperative Program, HCBA received the following letter from J. B. Gambrell, Corresponding Secretary and B. A. Copass, Assistant Corresponding Secretary of the BGCT.

 

Hamilton County Association

Carlton, Texas

Dear Brothers and Sisters:

We send greetings in Christís name. It is our hope that the present session of your body may mean a great advance in the affairs of the kingdom of God. As you know, the Baptists of Texas have committed to this office the task of directing our larger co-operative work. If we mistake not, two things are necessary in order to a continuous and well-balanced denominational development. The supreme problem is that of the enlistment of more of our people permanently in these larger affairs. The other problem is, that of efficient leadership. This latter is a means to an end. Nothing will be stable in its development, if it has to depend upon outside leadership. Last year because of the pressure and rush of unusual conditions, we were compelled to ask certain brethren and sisters to lead in their associations during our great campaigns. When we did it, we knew that it was not the best way and that it was only temporary.

We now suggest to you what we believe to be wise and constructive. Our request or suggestion is, that you appoint from your number a committee on co-operative work. Let that committee be composed of your most Godly and most alert men and women. As far as possible, they should be connected with or should represent the several organizations in your associations; as for example, a leader in the womanís work, in the B. Y. P. U., in Sunday School work, a leader in missions, one in education, a leading deacon and so on. It will be understood, that committee is our main avenue of approach to your people. It will keep in touch with our co-operative work and will bring the claims and needs to the people in the churches. In other words, the committee will see to it that every cause is presented to every church, and as far as possible to every member. We believe this plan to be sane and scriptural. We believe it will do the two things most needed, i.e. develop leaders and enlist the greatest number of people.

When your committee is appointed we desire, that the names composing it be sent to this office, at once, in order that we may communicate with its members as concerning the mighty tasks with which God has honored us and to which He is calling us. As Baptists, we are free in Christ Jesus. We co-operate only as we believe the Spirit of God leads. At the same time, this freedom is divine compulsion, the only compulsion that holds and sways through the years.

Our prayer is, that we may learn more and more to strive together in an organized, compact, and yet deeply spiritual way for the faith of Him who loved us and gave Himself for us.

Yours for service,

J. B. Gambrell, Cor. Sec. B.A. Copass, Assít Cor. Sec.

Texas Baptists were providing Christian education in these 16 institutions:

First Class (4-year colleges/university)

Baylor University, Waco

Baylor Female College ( now University of Mary Hardin-Baylor), Belton

Howard Payne College, Brownwood

Junior Colleges

Burleson College, Greenville

Decatur College, Decatur (now Dallas Baptist University, Dallas)

Wayland College, Plainview

Goodnight College, Goodnight

Marshall College would open in September, 1917 (now East Texas Baptist University)

Academies

San Marcos Academy Palacios Academy Bryan Academy

Rusk Academy Westminster Academy

Also

Baylor University College of Medicine and Pharmacy, Dallas

school for nurses, Dallas

school for nurses, Houston

Correlated Baptist schools were

Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Fort Worth

Simmons College (a 4-year college), Abilene (operated by Sweetwater Baptist Association) (now Hardin Simmons University)

Both Howard Payne and Baylor Female College had a Cottage Home system where girls who could not afford a college education could live, and work their way through school. By 1916 there were 650 children living in Buckners Orphans Home in Dallas. Dr. S. P. Brooks, President of Baylor University preached at the Thursday evening session of the annual association meeting. Texas Baptists provided medical care in the 250-bed Dallas Sanitarium and the 150-bed Houston Sanitarium.

1917

Seven hundred children lived at Bucknerís Orphans Home and the cost for food for one day was $200 or $6,000 a month. Texas Baptists were in the process of building a third sanitarium (hospital.) Three new churches-- North Lampasas (at McGirk), Ohio, and Providence--were established in the association. There were 337 missionaries involved in state missionary efforts. Foreign missionaries were facing crisis produced by the war in Europe.

My dear friend and encourager, William Lewis "Willie" Rodgers, preached his first sermon to an HCBA assembly on 31 August, 1917. His text was John 3:3 and John 3:16 and his outline was (1) Manís Great Need, (2) Godís Great Plan, and (3) Godís Great Purpose. Following a long pastoral ministry Willie and his wife Zula retired in Hamilton and Willie was the first pastor of Calvary Baptist Mission which was formed by this church in the early 1950's.

There was a severe drought in Hamilton County in 1917 and 1918.

1918

A third Baptist sanitarium was being erected in Waco. World War I left millions of starving and suffering people in Europe. R. J. Fletcher was employed for five months (April through August) as the associational missionary at a salary of $125 per month. The Executive Board of HCBA was authorized to borrow money from a bank to pay Bro. Fletcherís last month of salary.

1919

A drought of two years made employing an associational missionary during the past year unfeasible. The return of rain and a good harvest increased the possibility of employing another missionary for the county. Dr. F. S. Groner, of Waco, replaced Dr. J. B. Gambrell as Corresponding Secretary of the Executive Board of the BGCT. The Relief and Annuity Board of the SBC had been organized. On March 4, 1919, a meeting of all Baptists (B.M.A. and BGCT) in the state was held in Dallas. Lines of communication between the two groups were opening and the B.M.A. agreed to support the Seventy-Five Million Campaign. The Seventy-Five Million Campaign to raise that amount in five years was adopted by the SBC at the May, 1919, convention in Atlanta, GA, to increase work in missions, education, and benevolence. Dr. George W. Truett, of Dallas, chaired the $75 Million Campaign Commission. Dr. L. R. Scarborough, president of SWBTS was given a yearís leave of absence to be the chairman of the south wide division. Texans were expected to raise $16 million and in turn HCBAís apportionment was expected to be $75,000. The assigned goal for Hamilton Baptist Church to raise within the five-year time-period was $13,500. Using techniques developed by the government in selling Liberty Bonds during World War I, Baptists and many other denominations expected to follow suit. Over $92 Million was pledged and Baptist entities immediately made began spending their share of the money before it was received.

Texas Baptists were supporting and ministering through Buckners Orphans Home, the Dallas Sanitarium, the Houston Sanitarium, the old Preachers Home, eleven schools, several summer encampments, and the Baptist Standard. Russia, Bohemia, and Manchuria were open to Christian evangelism. Dr. R. C. Buckner had died but his work continued in Dallas and at Bucknerís annex at Goodnight, TX. Buckners was the second largest orphanage in the world. Land had been purchased in San Antonio for a fourth Texas Baptist sanitarium. Retired ministers still received a pension of only $10 per month.

1920

The name of the association was changed from Hamilton County Baptist Association to Hamilton County Missionary Baptist Association.

Approximately $37,000 was pledged by churches in HCBA to the $75 Million campaign. Members of Hamilton Baptist Church pledged $8,826. Baptists in Texas had:

       four senior colleges--Baylor University, Waco; Baylor College for Women at Belton; Howard Payne College, Brownwood; and Simmons College, Abilene;

      five junior colleges--Burleson, Wayland, Decatur, College of Marshall, and Rusk

     one academy--San Marcos

     Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary-Fort Worth

     Baylor University Medical, Pharmacy, and Dental departments in Dallas

There was great anticipation that the $75 Million Campaign would solve all of the financial needs of every Baptist endeavor and institution.

W. A. Todd, a young inexperienced preacher, was employed on March 15, 1920, to be the associational missionary. During 119 days of employment he preached 99 sermons, organized 4 Sunday Schools, one B.Y.P.U, and a prayer meeting. Gatesville Baptist Church ordained Todd on March 21, 1920. Thus began a relationship with HCBA which would endure for many years, even after Dr. W. A. Todd became a Bible professor at Howard Payne.

There were 600,000 Baptists in Texas in 3.647 churches and 145 associations.

1921

A copy of the 1921 minutes was mailed (sans envelope) from R. O. Henley, HCMBA Clerk in Hico to my grand-uncle, Neil Augustus Stribling, who was church clerk at Blue Ridge with a five cent, a two cent, and a one cent stamp attached to the back cover of the minute book. During the past year Baptist schools in Texas had an enrolment of 6,563 students.

A committee of Pete Curry, R. Adams, and Stephen Anderson Rains was assigned the task of reporting on the Central Texas Baptist Sanitarium at Waco. Their report revealed that this 80-bed hospital was located in a 5-story fireproof building situated on an elevated plateau in the northwest part of Waco where. "The cool prairie breezes bring comfort and health-giving ozone into every room." ... "In semi-private wards the rate is $3.25 per day, which includes board, beds, general nursing, and also includes services of the house physician." ... "The prices for private rooms range from $3.50 to $7.00 and includes board and other services as above." This hospital opened in May, 1920.

W. A. Todd continued employment as the associational missionary with a salary of $2,000 per year (half of the salary was paid by BGCT.) Under his leadership an associational B.Y.P.U. was organized and met on each fifth Sunday. Plans were also made to instigate monthly workers conferences. Sunday schools were organized in March, 1921, at the Old Hico and the Eidson school houses. From the Eidson Sunday School, the Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church was organized and was admitted to HCBA on August 31, 1931. Miss Iva Brister, a student from SWBTS, worked as in HCBA as a summer missionary. With the exception of one church, all churches in the association had Sunday Schools, one of which was rated A-1. Five churches used the Six Point Record System. The Home Church Campaign was adopted as a method to systematize collecting funds already subscribed to the 78 Million Campaign.

The $75 Million Campaign provided $350,000 for state mission work in Texas. Dr. Beville, of Brownwood, was the district missionary for this area. Texas Baptist contributed $2,300,117.49 to this campaign during the past year. The capacity of Buckners Orphans Home increased to 700 under the direction of Joe D. and Hal F. Buckner.

1922

W. A. Todd resigned as associational missionary on February 8, 1922, because the associational and churches were in a time of financial stress and in August had not paid $148 (or $152.17) of his salary. An offering was taken at the annual meeting with enough being collected and pledged to cover his salary.

Christian education was promoted through Baylor University, Waco; Baylor College, Belton; Burleson College, Greenville; Howard Payne College, Brownwood; Decatur College, Decatur; College of Marshall, Marshall; San Marcos Academy, San Marcos; Rusk Junior College, Rusk; Wayland College, Plainview; Simmons College, Abilene; Baylor College of Medicine, Baylor College of Dentistry, and Baylor College of Pharmacy, Dallas; Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary and the B.W.M.W. training school at Seminary Hill.

Support for missionaries (association, state, home, and foreign) was undergirded with funds secured from bank loans, which would be repaid at the close of the convention year by monies received through the $75 Million Campaign. The million dollar mark was reached in the Church Building Loan Fund in loaning money to churches for the erection of church buildings. There were 1,188 home missionaries who worked in these departments--Co-operative Missions, Enlistment, Evangelism, Mountain Schools, Foreigners, Indians and Negroes, Cuba, Panama, Soldiers and Seaman, Publicity, Southern Baptist Sanatorium, and Church Extension. The Home Mission Board was heavily in debt as the result of the enlargement of work at the beginning of the $75 Million Campaign and a significant decrease in gifts. Four hundred and sixty-two foreign missionaries served in sixteen countries around the world--253 in China, 28 in Japan, Mexico, 98 in Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, Nigeria, Italy, Spain, Yugoslavia, Romania, Hungary, Russia, Syria, and Palestine.

Texas Baptist had 4 hospitals in 1922--Baylor Hospital, Dallas; Baptist Sanitarium and Hospital, Houston; Central Texas Baptist Sanitarium, Waco; and Tarrant County Baptist Sanitarium and Hospital, Fort Worth (owned by Tarrant County Baptist Association.) New hospitals were being planned for San Antonio, Harlingen, and Abilene. The hospitals accepted all cases whether the patient could or could not pay for services needed.

Buckners Orphans Home (located six miles outside of Dallas) was filled with 700 children. Daily operating expenses was $500. The $75 Million Dollar Campaign made it possible to establish a standard high school at the home.

1923

SBC owned 19 hospitals, one of which was the Southern Baptist Tuberculosis Sanitarium at El Paso. BGCT had four hospitals: Baylor Hospital, Dallas, Baptist Hospital, Houston, Central Texas Baptist Sanitarium, Waco; and Baptist Hospital, Fort Worth. Construction of a hospital in Abilene was almost complete while plans were still in progress for hospitals in San Antonio and in Harlingen.

Holy Bible, Grace Truman, What Baptists Believe, and Mable Clement were recommended reading for children Churches were urged to establish Sunday School and B.Y.P.U libraries. As the result of action taken at the SBC meeting in May, 1923, Stewardship became a major emphasis at state, associational and local levels.

A. L. Heath was employed by Hamilton County Missionary Baptist Association from March 17, through August 21, 1923, as the associational missionary. Miss Bernia Tyson was employed by the State Board to do B.Y.P.U. and Sunday School work in the association.

While home and foreign missionaries were seeing unprecedented results from their labor, both the Home Mission Board and the Foreign Mission Boards were experiencing desperate financial crisis. Recommendations were made urging an every member canvass so that all of the $75 Million Campaign funds could be collected in haste. The Foreign Mission Board was facing a $2,000,000 indebtedness and the possibility of having to recall missionaries.

The Laymanís Union was a movement to involve all men in an effort to "bring in the Kingdom of Christ." It was a counterpart to the W.M.U. for women and B.Y.P.U. for young people. All twenty churches in the association had Sunday Schools.

Blue Ridge hosted the 47th Annual Session of HCBA on August 22 to 24, 1923. It was at this associational meeting that two mischievous church women ( Anna Jane Stribling and Sarah Bertie Sparks Grisham), served fried chicken gizzards to a visiting pastor, Clarence Allen Morton--pastor of Hamilton Baptist Church, who fondly loved these "delicacies." The ladies gathered the gizzards from the 49 fried chickens brought for lunch that day and strung the gizzards together with needle and thread, then placed the connected gizzards on a platter with some other pieces of chicken on top. The ladies took this platter of chicken to the gizzard-loving-preacher and asked if he would like a piece . Spying a gizzard peeking out, Bro. Morton inserted his fork into the protruding gizzard and immediately the lady withdrew the platter leaving this preacher holding a strand of 49 fried chicken gizzards.

1924

The scope of B.Y.P.U. had been enlarged to provide Primary, Junior, Intermediate, Senior and Old Peopleís Unions. To improve the ministry of Sunday Schools, a county superintendent and four district superintendents were appointed. A. L. Heath resigned as the associational missionary on May 1, 1924. R. W. Bynum was employed on May 11, 1924, as the Hamilton County missionary. Miss Koller was the summer Sunday School and B.Y.P. U. worker.

Summer encampments were held at Palacios and at Lampasas, as well as in 21 other locations. The Laymanís Movement continued efforts to organize interests and activities of men in Christian pursuits. Baptist Student Work had begun in an effort to enlist Baptist students into Baptist work on college campuses. The slogan for the Relief and Annuity Board was , "A pension for every Baptist minister, and from every Baptist Church a full share of the cost."

SBC had 544 foreign missionaries and had medical missionaries in China, Africa, and Mexico. At the June, 1924, SBC Convention, the Foreign Mission Board ascertained that no new missionaries could be sent out during the next year and pleaded for payment of pledges made to the $75 Million Campaign.

The first church building owned by FBC was destroyed by fire on February 6, 1924, and six days later the Ladies Auxiliary began prayer and preparations for a new building. Church services were held in the court house, as well as in a tent. Other local expenses (excluding pastorís salary and gifts to missions) for Hamilton Baptist Church was $22,170.50.

1925

State mission work in Texas received $687,494.66 from the $75 Million Campaign. Summer assemblies held in Palacios, Lampasas, Christoval, and Leuders were attended by about 50,000 people. The new Baptist college being built at McAllen was to be named for the Carrollís. This was the sixth year of operation for the Baptist Student Union in Texas. The purpose of BSU was to train students in state as well as Baptist colleges in church and denominational work.

There were seven Baptist hospitals in Texas--Baylor Hospital, Dallas; Houston Hospital; Fort Worth Hospital; Abilene Hospital; Arlington Hospital--just opened; Waco Hospital; and El Paso T. B. Hospital.

R. W. Bynum was the Hamilton County missionary.

Anticipating that the $75 Million Campaign would amply fund mission work, money was borrowed by both Home and Foreign Mission Boards. Mismanagement of the campaign and fraud in some instances, curtailed giving to the campaign by many churches. Hence both boards were faced with the necessity of maintaining programs, advancing to meet new needs and opportunities to share the Gospel of Christ, and the obligation to repay loans without money to repay them. The "fields were white unto harvest" but money had to be used to pay loans instead.

Local expenses of Hamilton Baptist Church were $35,588.52. A new church building was completed in February, 1925. William H. Tomlinson built the new church at a cost of $40,000. George Morrow Carlton gave a pipe organ to Hamilton Baptist Church in memory of his first wife Fronia Adams Carlton.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

THE BEGINNING OF BAPTIST WORK IN HAMILTON COUNTY

FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, 1896-1897

YEAR BY YEAR, 1873 - 1899

YEAR BY YEAR, 1900 - 1925

YEAR BY YEAR 1926 - 1950

YEAR BY YEAR 1951 - 1975

YEAR BY YEAR 1976 - 1998

A HISTORY OF FIRST BAPTIST CHURCH, HAMILTON

 

 
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People and Places: Gazetteer of Hamilton County, TX
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Copyright © March, 1998
by Elreeta Crain Weathers, B.A., M.Ed.,  
(also Mrs.,  Mom, and Ph. T.)

A Work In Progress